North Korean leader Kim Jong-un warns of “difficult” crisis
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. (File Photo/Reuters)
SEOUL: North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has asked citizens to prepare for what he said “difficult” crisis, following human rights groups’ warnings that North Korea faces economic instability and dire food shortages.
Speaking at a conference, Kim compared the situation to the deadly famine in the 1990s.
North Korea has, meanwhile, shut its borders due to the coronavirus pandemic, BBC reported.
The country has brought trade with China, its economic lifeline, to a standstill.
This is also on top of existing international economic sanctions over Pyongyang’s nuclear program, BBC said.
He also called on party cadres to “wage another more difficult ‘Arduous March’ in order to relieve our people of the difficulty, even a little”.
The “Arduous March” is a term used by the country’s officials to refer to North Korea’s struggle during a devastating famine during the 1990s, when the fall of the Soviet Union left North Korea without crucial aid.
It may be recalled that as many as 3 million people are estimated to have died during that period.
(With inputs from BBC)